Doctor Eclectic

Doctor Eclectic
Doctor Eclectic

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Cognitive Chimps

I recently watched an interview in which John Stossel broached a very even-handed interview with Cavan Brunesden, DDS, representing the pro-fluoride water position and Paul Connett, representing the anti-fluoridation movement.  Stossel brought to mind a debate on the O’Reilly Factor between him and Bill O’Reilly on a more humorous vein: political correctness.  Somehow connecting the dots between PC, PETA and universities, I was reminded of an animal rights mission to find a home for laboratory chimpanzees at one of the major universities in Florida.

Their point was that the very reason for the chimp study was to demonstrate they had “cognitive powers” similar to humans, being able to make a preferential choice as to what foods tasted better after cooking.  Therefore they should be granted the dignity and deference given humans in similar studies.

Stossel brought O’Reilly a current list of politically correct terminology that went way beyond doing away with labels for Stewardesses or Chairmen and included one of my favorites: a dog-guardian.  O’Reilly opined that part of the problem inherent in that term was that guardians usually got paid for their service while pet owners are in the opposite camp.

One of my favorite jokes concerns a man, flying to a business meeting who hears a female voice saying, “Well, as we break through the clouds, feel free to push your seat back and relax.”

His reaction: “That’s all we need, a woman pilot in the cockpit!”

To which the flight attendant says, “You are correct sir, our Captain is female, as are the First Officer, the Purser and all three Flight attendants.  Oh, and we no longer call it a cockpit, it is the Flight Operations Center.”

I’m unsure of what that says about me, but JerrySeinfeld would say the pc-appropriate line has moved in too far. He told O’Reilly and Stossel that when his wife mentioned to their 14 year-old daughter that she might want to spend more time in the city, to meet boys, she said, “That is so sexist!”  Seinfeld believes college campuses as well as his daughter have become unable to see the humor in stereotypical behavior.

There is reason to agree with Seinfeld’s opinion.  A recent article in the WSJ traced the history that has resulted in Federal Funding for Title IX, which was designed to equal the opportunity playing field for women in college sports, to be diverted to Universities being, Judge, jury, investigative authority and court in cases of alleged sexual harassment.

A case in point being the University of Virginia, which responded to now-debunked allegations of fraternity house gang rape by closing the fraternity house, expelling at least two students, and defending the school’s policing of on and off-campus allegations of sexual misconduct.  All of this in response to seemingly innocuous “Dear Colleague” letters from federal education officials, which changed to ground rules of Title IX, creating a new standard that concluded women did not know what “sports” they were interested in and needed to be educated that they could compete in activities more classically defined at athletics.

Title IX funding has now been diverted from support for women athletes to defense of the university’s compliance with federal guidance and funds have been siphoned off to, no-so-surprising trial lawyers.  This seems particularly ironic when we see US Woman’s Soccer prominent on a world stage.

 Please plan to join me on my next Post, where I will explore that I see as the present and near future of Robots and Drones and how that future may affect us.

No comments:

Post a Comment